Decade

Decade: (n) a period of ten years

I guess if we’re working with averages, most of us get to live in seven decades.

The first ten years are so out of our control that it would be difficult to know if the time period and the circumstances really mean that much to us. I do remember things from my first decade, but it’s more like a motion picture being played in the background or a series of fast trains speeding by.

My second decade was mostly about sex.

It was the discovery of it, the curiosity about it, the pursuit of it, masturbation and finally ending up in the arms of a woman, completely hapless.

My third decade was based around having children and figuring out how to pay bills, while still honoring my occupational dream. As you can tell by the conglomeration, I didn’t end up doing any of them particularly well.

Now, in my fourth decade, I started gaining some solvency.

What that meant to me was, when the electric bill showed up, I paid it instead of negotiating it. It was a pleasant step. Unfortunately, simultaneously I was dealing with children—some of whom were watching life whizz by and others, completely occupied with their groins.

The next decade I did a lot of traveling, performing and writing, at a time in my life when I was not in as good shape as ten years earlier. But contrary to popular opinion, life gives you a hamburger but really does not ask you what you want on it.

Now that I’m in my sixth decade, I don’t really care if people agree with me. I’m not out to impress anyone, I have enough money to get by and still buy a treat or two, and I have fun acting much more mentally spry than people believe I should be.

I have no idea how much further I will go in the decade pursuit.

Maybe some—maybe not.

But I will tell you, as long as you can go to bed at night, laugh at your mistakes, and get up the next morning believing you can do better, you will survive the war.

Choosy

Choosy: (adj) overly fastidious in making a choice.

Oh, there goes Webster again.

For some reason, the dictionary feels it’s important to offer a certain amount of social commentary in describing the words that are showcased.

Here is the truth of the matter as far as I know: if you are not choosy, eventually you don’t get to choose, and you’re stuck with what’s chosen for you.

Welcome to Earth.

So portraying “choosy” as a negative attitude is the propaganda of governments, religionists, politicians and Madison Avenue agents, who would really like to plan your entire life, but feel that saying this bluntly might scare you away. So instead, they connote that you are “choosy” if you do not choose what they want you to choose on any chosen occasion.

If the dinner menu for the night is barbecued baked beans with barbecued beef and barbecued corn bread with barbecued pudding for dessert, folks might frown at you if, in a choosy way, you insist you prefer not to “go barbecue” tonight.

The problem in our world is not that people are too choosy. The difficulty lies in the fact that we’re not given enough choice.

  • Politics is divided into two major parties, with a whisker’s difference between the pair.
  • Churches insist they offer varieties of services, while simultaneously delivering the same spiritually tone-deaf message.
  • And the clothing in the department stores settles into shades that are determined to be this season’s preference, with stylings which are the “hit of the catwalk.”

What would happen if Americans actually did become choosy?

If we decided not to let the critics determine the best motion pictures?

If we didn’t leave it up to aging librarians to pick out the top books?

What if we had an open marketplace, an open discussion, an open spirit and an open mind–to give things a platform and see how they fared?

What if the whole world were a blind taste test? How would McDonald’s, Wal-Mart, Apple, Democrats, Republicans and the religious system chart?

I’m choosy–and pretty proud of it. I often disagree with other people about my choices, but never in a disagreeable way.

But I’m not about to believe that something being popular gives it any more credence than I am to think that the hula-hoop was meant to last forever.

 

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